This cake was probably one of the most aesthetically pleasing cakes I have ever made, and also one of the most interesting. The stenciled sponge cake outside was a really cool technique I’d never done before, and how can you go wrong with macarons and fruit as toppings?
Cake: Jaconde sponge cake; white sponge cake
“Icing”: Strawberry white chocolate mousse
Technique: Stenciling; macarons
PINK DECORATING PASTE (PATE A DECOR)
This is the part that was used to created the decorative effect on the outside of the cake.
- 50 g softened butter
- 50 g icing sugar
- 2 egg whites
- 2 g food colouring
- 60 g cake flour
- Cream together the butter and the icing sugar
- Add the egg whites and food colouring to the mixture and mix until incorporated
- Sift in the flour and fold into batter
- Use a stencil to put the paste into patterns on a silicone sheet (avoiding the edges)
Note: You’ll want to stencil this on fairly thick or it won’t be that visible
POPPY SEED JACONDE CAKE
This formed the layer that covered the outside of the cake, and gets exposed to the elements. Almond is a nice flavour since it’s very subtle. You can also use something like hazelnuts, but it will darken the look of the cake.
- 120 g icing sugar
- 120 g ground black poppyseeds
- 120 almond flour
- 3 eggs
- 3 egg yolks
- 8 egg whites
- 180 g sugar
- 120 g cake flour
- Preheat oven to 380 F
- Combine the icing sugar, poppyseeds, and almond flour
- Whisk in the eggs and yolks and whisk together
- Whisk the egg whites and sugar to a medium stiff meringue
- Fold 1/3 of the meringue into the almond mixture and combine well. Then combine the rest of the meringue into the mixture.
- Bake until golden brown. This won’t take long as this is very thin.
- Grinding the seeds releases the aroma
- Immediately after baking, you need to put cornstarch on top of the cake and flip it over onto parchment paper. This MUST happen while the cake is quite hot.
- You can use black sesame seeds instead of poppyseeds.
WHITE SPONGE CAKE (2 x 6″ cakes )
This is the cake that gets layered inside of the cake ring.
- 6 eggs
- 70 g egg whites
- 180 sugar
- lemon zest
- 2 g vanilla
- 100 g cake flour
- 100 g cornstarch
- 60 g melted butter
- Preheat oven to 34-350 F
- Whip the eggs, egg whites, sugar, zest, and vanilla over a hot water bath until it reaches 45 C (little ouch).
- Put the egg mixture in a stand mixer and whip at max speed for a few minutes until it reaches maximum volume.
- Turn the speed down to medium and whip for at least 10 – 15 minutes. The mixture should be at ribbon stage and somewhat dry looking.
- Sift in the flour and cornstarch and fold into the batter.
- Mix in the melted butter.
- Pour into the two pans and bake for 20 – 30 minutes
- Lower the heat if you make a deeper cake
- Do NOT open the door prematurely. Definitely don’t open the door for at least 15 minutes. Once you see a golden brown top the oven is safer to open.
- Warming the eggs before whipping them adds stability.
STRAWBERRY WHITE CHOCOLATE MOUSSE
This gets layered in between the sponge cake layers inside the cake ring.
- 280 mL strawberry puree
- lemon juice (1 lemon)
- 150 g sugar
- 8 gelatin sheets
- 150 white chocolate
- 300 mL cream
- Soak the gelatin in cold water.
- Heat up the fruit puree, lemon juice, and sugar. Don’t boil this.
- Squeeze the excess water out of the gelatin. Remove the puree mixture from the heat and mix in the gelatin.
- Pour the puree over the white chocolate and stir until dissolved.
- Once the strawberry base is cool, whip up the cream.
- Mix 1/3 of the cream into the strawberry mixture. Then, fold the remaining 2/3 of the whipped cream into the mixture.
The cake was assembled on day one, and decorated on day two. We made macarons on day two (described in a separate post here) to put on top of the the cake, and also glazed some strawberries and raspberries.
- Cut strips of the joconde sponge to put inside the cake ring.
- Alternate layers of sponge and mousse, finishing with mousse on top.
- Set in the fridge overnight to set.
- Decorate with macarons and fruits.